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THE CASE OF BECCA ST.CLAIR -by Abril Navarro Becca was my best friend till two years ago, we met when we were only seven years old and grew together. Till this tragedy occured. She was a shy girl, never shared her feelings with anyone but me and was always trying to stay home and watch tv or read a book. I tried to take her to every place i could because we were like the moon and the sun, i like going to the park in a sunny day or dance in the rain every time there is a storm, but thankfully we understood each other perfectly. When she turned 22, Becca met the love of her life, John, who was so romantic and detailed that it make her fall for him instantly. They dated for 3 years until he asked her to marry him and she accepted. But when they did, everything changed. I saw Becca occasionally and when i did she always checked her phone nervously to see if her husband had called. All of this was extremely rare but i just thought they wanted to spend time together. One day i received a phone call, it was Becca, crying out for help, i barely could understand her but i manage to understand that John was hitting and abusing her constantly. She was so afraid, i tried to calm her down and tell her to escape and come home with me. She told me she would by by my house two hours later, but Becca never arrived. So i walked to her home t check on her but instead i found the ambulance and the cops arresting John. Apparently, the neighbours listened to Becca screaming and call the police, but they were to late. If i had arrived earlier i could had avoid this, but i never saw her again. And i miss her more and more every day.

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Domestic violence numbers keep increasing in Argentina -by Micaela Cina There are 670 reports of domestic violence daily in Argentina. This is a serious problem in this country since the numbers continue to grow as the number of cases. Luckily, the last years, justice managed to take many measures and sanction against this kind of violence and new laws have been sanctioned to prevent and punish this violence; but cases continue to increase and this has to stop. On one hand the laws that were sanctioned against domestic violence started with argentina's national law 24.417 enacted in 1994 and it was the first law on domestic violence. Under this law, domestic violence is defined as "injury or physical or psychological abuse". In 2009 a much broader law was enacted “ The Comprehensive Law on the Prevention, Punishment and Elimination of Violence against Women in their Interpersonal Relations�.This new law defines many forms of domestic abuse that were not present in the former law. In 2012, the Congress passed an anti femicide law imposing stricter penalties on perpetrators who kill their spouses, partners, or children as a consequence of gender based violence. On the other hand 'The House of the meeting', an Argentine Association fighting against gender violence, estimates that there are more than 4.5 million women victims in argentina. Last year, 260 women, more than four a week, died as a result of their abuse. Domestic violence includes both men and women but in argentina it is much more large amount of cases of women. Statistics say that 91% of cases referred to psychological violence, 67% physical violence, 37% economic violence and 13% sexual violence. As shown in the graph the number of estimated cases of violence domestic in argentina grew enormously in the last 9 years. It is a problem that needs to stop urgently, as the cases are, multiplying as much as the number of victims. We must continue fighting for equality for all.

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This week in Raising Your Fists: the story of Bertha -by Julieta Camaño Let’s call her Bertha. She just turned fifty one years. She is a mother of two and got divorced last July after twenty nine years of marriage. Bertha and Joseph -not his real name- were really young when they got married, twenty two and twenty five. Three months after that she got pregnant with Thomas and twenty one month later, Annie was born. ‘Ever since the day we started darting he was trouble but I didn’t wanted to admit it’ Bertha said to the Raise Your Fist. They didn’t knew each other that much, they just dated for a few month but she though that he was the love of her life. He proposed to her and she said yes immediately. Her parents didn’t approved that, but they got married anyways in a little chapel in their hometown: Gulfport, Mississippi. As we already told, three months after that they were already expecting their first child. That’s when they decided to move to Cleveland to have more opportunities of a better lifestyle. “He would fight me for every little thing, go out and come back hours later smelling like alcohol. I was busy doing the housework and I thought it was okay for him to have fun” Bertha adds. Thomas was born and everything was like a fairy tail. Almost two years later the baby girl came to this world. Things were pretty much the same, until one day. Bertha and the kids spent the night alone because Joseph decided to go out without letting them know where. Thomas and Annie went to the school and Bertha was doing laundry trying to contact her husband. Around 10am he got home. He was completely waisted and high. Joseph started to yell at his wife nonsense things and suddenly it happened: he hit her. She was in shock and left the room. A few hour later he appeared with a crying face and her favorite flowers asking for forgiveness. Bertha couldn’t say no to him, after all she was in love. “One day became two, two days became three, three days became four and so on. I couldn’t keep the count on how many times he had threatened me, hit me, and then apologize. I didn’t have anyone to talk to, in Cleveland I had zero friends because I was always working in the house.” The kids didn’t noticed anything, at least that’s what she believes. Bertha was so good at hiding what was going on and Joseph was such a good father that they never suspected until they went away for college. Thomas moved to Michigan and Annie to Dayton. The situation in Cleveland was getting worse and worse. The aggression and abuse were even more than before. In may of this year during an argument when Bertha threatened with leaving him, Joseph said that he was going to kill her or commit suicide to stop that, and left the house. She was crying and Thomas call to check on her. He realized that something was going on and started to ask questions until 3


his mom finally told him everything. He booked a flight to Gulfport for her to stay with his grandparents and friends. That night she was leaving, with her heart completely broken but knowing it was for the best. When she got to her hometown all of her family and friends were happy to see her and willing to help with whatever she needed. She contacted a lawyer that she saw in Raise Your Fist and asked for the divorce. In July during summer break Thomas and Annie went to visit her and gave her all the support and love that she needed. Joseph accepted and know he’s in rehab because alcoholism and drug abuse. When he ends that treatment he is going to go to prison because he was found guilty of all the things that happened in their marriage. “I though I would never had the guts to leave him. I wanted to believe that he was going to change because I loved him. I regret asking for the divorce two decades later. I’m so grateful for having these amazing and strong children. My friends and family are my rock on this moments and now I know I can count on them for everything. I swear that it gets better. I’m so happy now, I feel free. Stay strong and put yourself first, if you have kids, they will understand without judging you. You matter. You are worth it. You can do this, you can win this fight and start a new life” with that message, Bertha ended this interview, being the perfect example of overcoming and proving that it is possible.

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LETTERS TO DE EDITOR Dejar Raise Your Fist team: My name es Devin and I’m 34. Last month I had the guts to ask my husband for divorce. He was really possessive and toxic. Thanks to you I got out of a marriage full of lies and fights. Raise Your Fist magazine: The magazine helped me think and I realized I needed help. I am 25 years old and I live with my boyfriend Sam, we have been together for three years and five months now. Our discussions are always the same: I do something wrong and he gets crazy and shout and says horrible things to me. Sometimes when we fight he punches random objects and I’m afraid that one day I might become one. To the Editor of the Raise your fist magazine: I found your articles section very interesting and full of new information i didn't know. This topic nowadays is really becoming a problem around the world and i believe my sister

is a victim of domestic violence as well. I have my theories and probes that she is being bitten up by her husband. A week ago she arrived home at 5am, she was supposed to stay with her boyfriend, i entered to her room to check on her and see if everything was alright and i found her crying in silence with her face covered in bruises. I ask her what had happened and she couldn't find a more lame excuse than tell me she fell of in the street and hit herself with some bench. I didn't buy it but i let that pass, until two days ago that i accidentally step in her room when she was changing her clothes and saw on her back some bruises and scars. Her face turned red and she told me her friends dog had attacked her without reason.

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Dear Raise Your Fist magazine,

The magazine helped me think and I realized I needed help. I am 25 years old and I live with my boyfriend Sam, we have been together for three years and five months now. Our discussions are always the same: I do something wrong and he gets crazy and shout and says horrible things to me.

Sometimes when we fight he punches random objects and I’m afraid that one day I might become one.

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Damien Glez. August 2010.

Adam Zyglis. September 18, 2014.

Staff Writer. October 24, 2010.

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Micaela Cina.

Sally Edelstein.

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Raise Your Fist  

Magazine about domestic violence.

Raise Your Fist  

Magazine about domestic violence.

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